Jamestown BPU Distributes New Residential Solid Waste Containers

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Jamestown Board of Public Utilities (BPU) residential Solid Waste customers soon will find that new standard garbage containers have been delivered to their homes. The distribution of containers will begin May 10 and is anticipated to take three-four weeks to deliver approximately 14,000 containers.

As part of the new “Assigned Garbage Container Program,” BPU-provided garbage containers will be assigned and delivered to each residential Solid Waste account holder. The containers are the property of the utility company, are assigned to each service address and are included in the monthly Solid Waste customer charge.

Customers may begin using the containers as soon as they receive them. The program formally starts July 1.

If needed, customers also may request that an additional BPU-issued garbage container or containers be assigned to their addresses for an extra flat monthly fee by contacting the Garbage Hotline. Extra containers may be requested for a minimum period of six months.

In recent years, BPU customers were reminded of a Jamestown City Code regulation requiring that residential garbage be placed at the curb in a garbage container with a lid. Customers regularly have requested that the BPU provide such containers.

Use of standard containers means that BPU garbage collection will be semi-automated. With one employee driving each truck, a second employee will wheel containers into place behind the vehicle where a tipping mechanism will empty the bagged garbage into the truck. The tipping mechanisms have been installed on the BPU’s existing fleet of trucks.

This updated method of garbage collection is anticipated to reduce the number of worker injuries caused by repetitive heavy lifting. Additionally, as workers will not touch garbage bags as part of the new process, they will avoid harm caused by needles, other sharp objects or chemicals sometimes found in garbage bags.

In addition to increased employee safety, the upgraded collection process is expected to reduce litter, odor and pest problems in neighborhoods and improve the safety and cleanliness of the City. Each container will include an attached lid, with larger wheels that make the container easy to push.

The assigned container program is similar to processes used throughout the country with overall positive results. In the past several years, BPU employees researched and visited cities that already utilize the new system.

Each container is numbered, identifying the residence where the container is assigned, much as the numbered recycling bins currently are assigned to each home. The numbered containers remain with their designated residences and must be left behind when residents move out of the property.

Residents may write their service addresses on their assigned containers with marker to help keep track of which container is assigned to each residence.

The BPU garbage containers are made specifically to fit BPU tipping mechanisms, meaning that older containers not assigned by the utility may not be used for overflow garbage. Customers should place bagged garbage in the containers and no overflow garbage may be left on the ground without incurring a fee of $25 per occurrence and a $5 per bag fee.

If a customer has an unusual amount of garbage that will not fit in the BPU-issued container for an upcoming week, that person can call the Garbage Hotline at 661-1651 to request an extra collection in any given week on the day before or the day after their regular garbage days for a fee of $10. As of July, 2021, residents also may schedule an extra collection themselves by completing an online form on our customer portal under “My Account” on the www.jamestown.com website.

If, after using the container, customers believe that the size will not work for them, they should know that the BPU offers a smaller container for customers with physical needs or space limitations. An application for an Exception to the Standard-sized BPU Garbage Container may be requested from the Garbage Hotline or the BPU Customer Service Office.

The BPU Recycling Rebate Credit program continues as usual, with Solid Waste customers recycling with their orange RFID recycling bins. Customers still may discard four extra items each week on their normal garbage collection days. Such items must weigh no more than 40 pounds each, be no larger in volume than a single bag of trash and be easily carried by one employee.

The electronic and large item collection service remains available to customers with an appointment and a fee. Special collection appointments still may be made by calling the Garbage Hotline or by completing an online form under My Account at www.jamestownbpu.com.

A list of Frequently Asked Questions appears on the BPU’s website at www.jamestownbpu.com and is included in the BPU’s May customer newsletter that is enclosed in billing envelopes. Copies of the FAQs are available in the BPU Customer Service Office, the Jamestown City Clerk’s Office and at the James Prendergast Library.

For questions, customers may call the BPU Garbage Hotline at 661-1651, Customer Service at 661-1660 or Communications at 661-1680.